Lottery career in the cards for BSCJ student
Scott Brown and lady luck are fairly close. He’s one of only two lottery investigators for the Wisconsin Department of Revenue and after a few starts and stops, is just a statistics course away from earning his bachelor’s degree in criminal justice. “It was always eating at me that I didn’t finish,” Scott says.
Most days Scott, originally from Madison, fields questions from players and the 4,800 retailers who offer the Wisconsin Lottery. He occasionally investigates fraud and theft or aids in larger inquiries, but for the most part he works hard to keep a low profile. “I’m sort of a fire extinguisher when there’s a problem, and if your name isn’t in the paper, it’s a good day.”
Working in Wisconsin’s prison system for 10 years in various positions, including youth counselor and sergeant, Scott started pursuing his bachelor’s degree in 1992 at Edgewood College, Madison. He realized, however, that learning in a classroom was claustrophobic and started taking online criminal justice courses at UW-Platteville in 2008.
“It was a blessing because I just couldn’t sit in a classroom anymore. There were sometimes 200 students in one class and it was hard for your voice to be heard. But when you’re online: ‘boom,’ you’re heard.”
Like all UW-Platteville Online students, Scott appreciated the support and motivation by faculty, especially Gary Apperson, a retired police officer who teaches online from Alaska. Apperson often tutored Scott on writing “A” papers for any course in the program.
Scott advises online students to understand their limitations and consider starting with just one class. “Learning online can be intimidating at first, but just keep chipping away and don’t expect things to happen overnight. Don’t leave it on the table until you change your mind.”